Health & Fitness

Fisherman's spaghetti is an enticing Italian dish

While visiting Elba, a tiny, picturesque island off the western coast of Italy, I tasted a wonderful pasta dish made with fresh shellfish, white wine and spaghetti. Spaghetti del pescatore (fisherman's spaghetti) is the kind of simple dish that makes Italian food so enticing.

I have adapted the recipe, using clams and shrimp, but mussels, lobster or scallops may be substituted.

The accompanying salad uses fennel, a pale green bulb with darker, feathery leaves. It has a similar texture to celery and a very mild licorice flavor.

This meal contains 615 calories per serving with 15 percent of calories from fat.

Helpful hints:

* Crushed red pepper can be found in the spice section of the supermarket.

* Buy pre-shelled shrimp.

* Minced garlic can be found in the produce section of most markets.

* Slice the celery and fennel in a food processor using the thin slicing blade.

* A quick way to chop fennel leaves is to snip them with a scissors.

Spaghetti del Pescatore (Fisherman's Spaghetti)

1 lb. fresh clams or scallops

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/8teaspoon crushed red pepper

1/2cup dry white wine

3/4lb. peeled and deveined shrimp

1 cup low-sodium, low-fat tomato sauce

1/2cup chopped parsley

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4lb. spaghetti (1 1/2 cups cooked)

2 teaspoons olive oil

Place a large saucepan filled with water on to boil. If using clams, scrub them and place in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cover with a lid and cook until shells open, about 2 minutes, shaking pan several times. Remove clams to a bowl, leaving the juice in the pan. (If juice is sandy, strain through a sieve lined with paper towels.) If using scallops, rinse and set aside. Add the garlic, crushed red pepper and white wine to the skillet. Boil to reduce liquid for about 1 minute. Lower heat to medium and add shrimp, scallops and tomato sauce. Simmer, uncovered, 2 minutes or until shrimp are pink; remove from heat. Sprinkle with parsley and add salt and pepper to taste.

Cook spaghetti in boiling water 8 to 9 minutes. Drain and toss with olive oil and salt and pepper to taste and sauce. Serve on plate and top with sauce. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 566 calories (14 percent from fat), 9.1 g fat (1.4 g saturated, 4.0 g monounsaturated), 270 mg cholesterol, 48.6 g protein, 59.2 g carbohydrates, 4.3 g fiber, 300 mg sodium.

The Wichita Eagle—12/21/10

Celery and Fennel Salad

2 celery stalks (about 1 cup sliced)

1 small fennel bulb (about 2 cups sliced)

2 tablespoons capers (optional)

2 tablespoons reduced-fat vinaigrette dressing

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Remove leaves from celery and fennel. Chop some of the fennel leaves to make about 2 tablespoons chopped leaves. Thinly slice the celery and fennel. Place in a bowl and add the capers and dressing. Toss well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle chopped fennel leaves on top. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 50 calories (23 percent from fat), 1.3 g fat (0.1 g saturated, 0.4 g monounsaturated), 1 mg cholesterol, 1.8 g protein, 9.6 g carbohydrates, 4.0 g fiber, 557 mg sodium.

The Wichita Eagle—12/21/10